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David LeFebvre's Pan-Mass Challenge

News / Training Updates 2006

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I was hoping to get this updated weekly, but instead I have been updating it weakly…


We’re down to the wire and the ride is only days away! It is supposed to be very hot this week, but much milder at the weekend for the event itself. Let’s all pray that the forecast holds! I will do the remainder of my training rides in the morning before the worst heat of the day –also to acclimate my body to doing the work at that time of day.


I rode the MIT Pie Ride (see link in the 7/10 update) again last week and got lost. What was supposed to be an 82 mile ride ended up being 110!  I missed a turn and just kept going because I had folded the cue sheet and just flipped it over and totally missed the last turn on the first page. I didn’t realize I had missed the turn until I started to see signs for towns in NH. That was a long day in the saddle.


I have been on a few more group rides and have found out that everyone lies in cycling –at least when it comes to their average pace. I called up the organizer of the group ride and asked “How fast are you going to go tonight” and was told “We are going to put the hammer down, so about 24+ mph average”. I went on that ride and my computer told me we averaged 17 mph. I think he was confused between “average” and “max” speed functions on his computer.


I have to remember to keep telling myself “It’s not a race, it’s not a race, it’s not a race…” or I will kill myself on the first day and have nothing left over for the Sunday ride into P-town. And now I hear that Greg LeMond is riding too! I would love to see how I stack up against a real pro, but I have to remind myself that this is not a race.


After the ride, my wife and I are going to spend a couple of days on the Cape to relax and NOT ride bikes. When I get home I will post an update to let you know how it went.


After about a month of riding with the goal of hitting the saddle 3 or 4 times a week, I am little bit embarrassed to say that I have yet to get out on the bike more than twice in any week. Blame the perfectly flat water. I have been training every day, but the water has been so nice that I just couldn't pass it up! I have been rowing a single more than I riding my new bike.
But I have got some valuable time in the saddle. I went on a couple of group rides and am no longer worried about riding with a group.

The bike is a dream to ride -always trust Italians when it comes to making fast things! It is so smooth and accelerates like a top fuel dragster. I have climbed some pretty steep hills in the big ring too!

I have done one long-ish ride of 80 miles. It was a long day in the saddle mostly because of traffic. Other than that, it was a lot of fun. If you are interested, the route I took is linked below courtesy of MIT Cycling:

So I think I am ready for the Pan-Mass. They say the first day is the hardest at 111 miles with some pretty intense climbs.

I can't wait.

In the meantime, I am going to go on more training rides hopefully with more people.


I just got back from the IRA (Intercollegiate Rowing Association) National Championships where my crew placed a respectable 9th in the USA.While 9th at any regatta is not where you want to finish, this exceeds their rank of 11 so we were happy with the performance.

So now I have time to get out on the road and see what my new rig can really do!

But first, I needed to set up a baseline. Just before we left for the IRA our strength coach had me do some physiological tests (max lifts, body fat, resting HR, etc). I weighed in at 202 (which is down from 207 when I tested last year) @ 10.5% body fat, and my resting HR is 48. Next she had me do max tests on the following weight lifting exercises:

Front Squat: 313lbs (up from 285 last year)

Back Squat: 391lbs (up from 360 last year)

Power Clean: 285lbs(up from 260 last year)

Bench Press: 245lbs (no test last year)

Bench Pull: 267.5lbs (up from 245 last year)

When I got back from the IRA, I was inspired by my crew's performance so I pulled 2000m ergometer test and scored a respectable (for my age) 6:02.1.

So my baseline fitness is pretty good. My biggest goal for the next month is acclimating to the saddle, getting comfortable on the bike while still improving my aerobic base, and reacquainting myself to riding with a group.



Well I got the bike and it is pretty awesome! After much research into what I really wanted, and what was actually affordable, I came up with a Pinarello Galileo. It is their entry level race bike and is very cool! Even though it is "entry level" it is still a real race machine. It has all the same features as their $8000 machines but at a much more down to earth price. It weighs just 19 pounds and is stiff enough that I can put the hammer down with no noticeable flex. Yet is is very comfortable too.. 


Currently I am training 5-6 days a week. I lift weights twice a week and the other 3 or 4 days are aerobic training. I mix it up between rowing (mostly!), running, and cycling on stationary bikes.

I am looking for a new bike since I only have an old Mountain Bike. I would like to get a new 'real' road bike and have been looking at the following:

I am hoping to get the bike some time this spring so I can put in as many 'real' miles on the road as possible.


The donations have begun to trickle in -THANKS!
Please continue to give and be generous. Every little bit counts.


David LeFebvre's Pan-Mass Challenge